/*23 Breaths: March 2013*/

Friday, March 29, 2013

I don't surf

I got the day off

a Good Friday indeed!

my stoke levels topped off

from last nights show

only to find

the swell(s) had waned to the point

of it being painful

to watch

Fortune has smiled upon me however

and I have other things to do

(18 individual string changes later hilarity ensues)

On my walk

From the car park to the sand

I fell instep with a young man

and his coach/father/mentor/sponsor

and the conversation

although I hesitate to call it that

it was really more of a pre game

locker room talk

complete with clipboard

and X and O diagrams

went something like this

"...make sure to get enough speed, a couple of pumps if you have to, so that when you hit the lip and start your rotation you make it all the way around and stick the landing...

if you don't make the landing the judges won't give you any points..."

now I grew up in The OC, the epicenter of

big ass corporate surf culture

and I have grown complacent

you might even say "comfortably numb"

to the fact

that they are growing

blond haired, blue eyed boys

in test tubes

to feed the needs of

the advertisers

in ER and ING.

But still I was deeply saddened

that the "surf experience"

I so dearly love

had been reduced

to a quest for "points"

until the realization hit me

(or maybe it was my morning coffee)

that it doesn't matter

to me

in my small personal universe


I don't surf

I ride a MAT!

Photo  by Ken "official photographer of the revolution" Samuels

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sierra Designs - Good Stuff

I have been on a crusade of late to only purchase functional items that have been well designed and crafted. Usually these items are purchased used, are still in good shape and will continue to provide continued use for a long time.

I have always like the functional work of the folks at Sierra Designs.


Just your basic three pocket day pack.
Having lived a full life as a school pack this piece is now the designated Frisbee pack for my son.

The main compartment cinches closed and the top folds over and closes with some D rings.

The top also has a zipper compartment for those easy to get to items.

Nylon ribbon straps nothing exciting here.

The beauty of the piece is that between clean functional design and great construction it's easily twenty years old and is in perfect shape! 

Ready for another for several more decades of use.

Friday, March 22, 2013

The Slyder Cup

There has been an interesting development in the mat world

Many of you may have noticed a disturbance in THE FORCE

You may have read about it on FaceBook or the UKMatSurfer site
(worth the trip if only to hear Paul Gross give us some historical perspective)

The just of the matter is that there is going to be a contest of several of the less mainstream surf forms

Read all about the Slyder Cup here

"body surfers, paipo riders, mat surfers, bellyboarders and alaia riders in a one-day surf competition that celebrates the art of waveriding from a ‘finless’ perspective"

Great Stuff!

I love the gatherings of the alt surfcraft variety!

Nicest people you would ever want to meet.

That said I kind of had to ponder the part about "competition"

Although I have surfed in my share of contests in high school I have come to view the whole pro contest deal like a sort of traveling circus that invades the local peak (usually at the wrong time of year) and then moves on without too much effect on the surfing done hereabouts.

"Competitive surfing is like competitive picnicking" is my usual take on the thing.

How can you judge who is having the most fun?

(Sidebar - They can't judge. Since the beginning an elaborate set of criteria was created as to what is good surfing. Funny thing is since surfing is always changing the judging never keeps up with the surfing. If you weren't on the nose you didn't get many points, then it was if you didn't do three linked turns to the beach you didn't get any points. Right now if you don't land the double-reverse-fatty-aire you punted in the shore break, well no points for you! It's hilarious and the surfers doing the leading edge surfing are always penalized.

An interesting note on judging surf mat riding. This will be easy because as my wife likes to point out "You all look the same out there". True. Surfmat competitions would of course be judged on the biggest smile and the loudest hoots by the mat rider. Straight forward, simple, easy.)

Surf contests are a marketing tool to sell more t shirts.

So where does that leave us?

The few

the proud

the elderly, myopic, and or crazy people that simply prefer to ride a mat because it's fun?

It leaves us EXACTLY where we were before

Paddling to get into waves, making some not making others. Getting cut off by kooks riding something weird. Because that's what kooks do.

But you won't care because you ride the most advanced surf craft on the planet and they are a blast!

Contest or no contest.

Post Script --

I have been reading and rereading the comments around the internet.  I found the post by Paul Gross over at UK Mat Surfer the most enlightening. PG was there, at what some might say was the beginning of the end. Now he spends his time, reinventing and refining the surf mat. Still stoked on getting into the water and having fun. If "Are mat surfing  contests good for the sport?" was the question. then PG is the answer. Just vary your inflation and continue on down the line.   

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

me and the Omni

Spring is here

new beginnings for

my favorite trinity


The Winter

has never been my favorite

I don't even surf much

too dark too cold

too winter

Which is not to say

there isn't tons of surf

why just to the

shall we say north / south on my little

stretch of coast

the waves have been

quite good

or so I'm told

But spring is here now

and I look forward

to brightly lit

glassy mornings

Just me and the Omni...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Spring is one of the four conventional temperate seasons, following winter and preceding summer

at least that is the conventional view.

The one you get if you query Wiki for a description of the season.

But surfers know

at least along this particular angle of coastline

that spring

is when

the quarters run out

of the great northwest wave machine

and the great wave gods of the south

flip the switch

on the big

wave generator

down under

It starts tomorrow

I can hardly wait!

Friday, March 15, 2013

waiting for the world to change

needs more cowbell

waiting for the for tide to change

the wind to quit

or turn off shore

waiting for the swell

to clean up or change direction


for the climate

to decide if

this is just a touch

of june

in march


if we are just

going to skip


this year

News in from The Islands about some of the Wedge crew changing Waimea on their 4GFs. Awesome! If I can wrangle some pics I'll post em.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Surfmats and bicycles

two of my favorite things!

check out the Bicycle Rust and Foam Dust blog

for some travel adventure

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Spring Forward

Once again
you have changed my
time / space

For the next few weeks
I'll be late for meetings
and not really hungry yet
for dinner

Please stop

Thank you

As you were

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

another trip around - the garden

As you regular readers know I love my tomatoes and over the weekend we picked up some starts for this years summer garden

These fragile little flowers will soon be transformed into beautiful fruit!

Nothing better than going into the back yard and picking and eating a handful

Monday, March 4, 2013

the illusion of summer

Nothing to say this morning so I'll just post pictures.

Even the title (I original wrote "tidal" it must be a Monday) is borrowed from Surfsister's infinitely more readable blog  The Surf and the Fury.

That's how it goes.

One minute you have something to say the next minute you don't.

One day it's 80 degrees and offshore the next it's in the 60's and it rains on your morning walk.

"It's all part of life's rich pageantry"